Health Services

We provide a range of services to the Healthcare Market in both private and public NHS sectors - such as assistance in the National Program, data warehousing and system integration

Touchstone Case Study: The Pathology Partnership

The Pathology Partnership Case Study data warehouse


The Pathology Partnership is a joint venture between six NHS Trusts in the East of England that have come together to modernise delivery of pathology services for hospitals, GPs and patients. The Partnership was formed to create a network of laboratories across a wider geographical area, which in turn delivers significant efficiencies and benefits for patients, hospitals and GP surgeries.

Customer Situation

As part of the forming of the Pathology Partnership, all six Trusts would be migrated onto the WinPath pathology system with their existing systems decommissioned. However, only some of the historical pathology information would be migrated into WinPath. TPP needed a partner who could migrate the data from the historical systems into WinPath, and who could also provide a data warehouse and historical enquiry portal for viewing all historical pathology requests.

Solution Provided

As the selected partner, we worked with each of the six Trusts and TPP to understand the data to be migrated into WinPath, and the data to be placed into the historical archive. We then created data extract, manipulation, de-duplication, data cleaning and loading routines for both the WinPath and historical enquiry systems. For the new data warehouse, we developed a new data warehouse based on SQL Server 2014 with data analysis cubes, and an ASP.NET enquiry front end. Whilst the resulting data warehouse was fairly small in terms of objects (52 tables, 24 enquiry screens and 7 data cubes), the amount of data imported from all sites totalled over 12TB with a lot of ‘big data’ duplication and normalisation. Finally, an HL7 results feed was included to update the new data warehouse with new completed results from the new pathology system (WinPath).

Benefits of Service

The new data warehouse allowed the six Trusts to quickly decommission their old pathology systems saving software and hardware support costs. The combined data warehouse also provided an ‘across cluster’ view of patient test results regardless of location. The migration service to WinPath de-risked this migration activity meaning that TPP and the pathology supplier (Clinisys) could concentrate on delivery of new benefits through the new pathology System.

Methods Utilised

Working with the TPP project managers and the pathology leads for each site, we worked to agree the scope of data to be taken into both WinPath and the new enquiry system. We provided multiple stages of data validation to each trust to allow sign off of the migrated data both prior (content and layout) and post data migration.

External Factors

As part of such a large overall project, cooperation was required from the entire pathology and IT teams of each trust, as well as extensive communication with the TPP project managers and new Pathology Supplier (Clinisys).

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